Another Judge Rules DOMA Unconstitutional

Another judge has struck down DOMA, Chris Geidner at MetroWeekly reports:

WilkenOn Thursday evening, a federal judge in California held that the Defense of Marriage Act and a provision of tax law unconstitutionally limit same-sex couples and domestic partners from participating in the long-term care plan offered by the California Public Employees Retirement System, or CalPERS.

The May 24 decision in the class-action lawsuit came from U.S. District Court Judge Claudia Wilken, a Clinton appointee to the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California whose chambers are located in Oakland, and is the first federal court decision relating to the 1996 marriage-defining law since President Obama announced on May 9 that he believes that same-sex couples should be able to marry.

Wilken joins two other judges who have struck down the law — Judge Tauro in Massachusetts, and Judge Jeffrey White in California.

Geidner adds:

In conclusion, Wilken ordered CalPERS not to use DOMA or the relevant tax provision to deny enrollment to same-sex spouse and registered domestic partners in the state. She also ordered that the federal government not disqualify CalPERS's plan from the beneficial tax treatment for following the court order. Finally, Wilken established in Thursday's ruling that the decision would be stayed, or put on hold, during an appeal of her decision if one is sought.


  1. Henry Juhala says

    This actually makes the fourth federal court judge to rule DOMA unconstitutional.

    The decision issued by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Thomas Donovan was prompted by a joint bankruptcy filing by a Los Angeles gay couple legally married in 2008. The U.S. trustee assigned to vet the filing by Gene Balas and Carlos Morales asked Donovan to dismiss the Chapter 13 petition because the 15-year-old law, known as DOMA, restricts federal benefits like joint filings to marriages between a man and a woman. Donovan ruled that the DOMA law violated the Constitution’s equal protection guarantee.

    The important thing about that case was that 20 of 24 federal bankruptcy court justices all signed on in agreement with Judge Donovan that DOMA is unconstitutional.

  2. bandanajack says

    the republicans of the house will almost certainly double, or triple down, and before long BLAG is going to look like the duck in the AFLAC commercial with the leaking vote. how much money can they bleed in attorney’s fees while appearing in courtrooms around the nation defending unwinnable cases.

  3. kpo5 says

    What’s the quickest this could hit the SCOTUS? This whole Green Card thing is nauseating…